Sunday, July 31, 2011

First Big Win :)

17 July 2011- Seolobong Olympic Distance Tri

Exactly 14 days after IM Korea there was a local Korean Tri. I figured it would be a good way to get going again and keep me motivated right after the IM. Well my body/mind didn't quite agree with the keep on going and staying motivated. I believe all of the travel and then having to come back to reality of working made the adjustment hard. It was nice to be home and just eat, train, sleep and repeat. So coming back from IM Korea I was un motivated and just did a little here and a little there. I wasn't keeping up with all the workouts that my coach had planned, but when I did the workouts I felt good. It is now 4 weeks later and I am still struggling to get it together, but I wake up every morning believing that today will be the day that it all comes together. I went out last night and drank way too much and slept most of today away. I think it is safe to say that going out every now and again is a good thing, it reminds me why I don't do it as often like when I was here before. I accomplished absolutely nothing today and that is never a good feeling. But I promise tomorrow will be the day that I get my ass in gear, because believe it or not Kona is 68 days away :) Alright so that was the long part of the blog here is the short and sweet part about the race.

It was a 2 loop swim course and I got a good start. Couldn't really find any feet for some reason, but I guess that is what happens when you are in the top 3 of the swim and the other guys out swim you by 2 minutes, I was more less in no mans land. I swam a pretty disappointing 25:18, but who knows maybe the course was long.

Wasn't really sure how the legs were going to feel, I think I only biked 2 or 3 times since IM Korea. I went out and tried to find a rhythm, but took a wrong turn about 3 miles into the ride, lost some ground and had two guys pass me as I was getting back on course. I made up some ground and started feeling good on the second loop and about half way through it I took the lead. I negative split the bike in terms of power with 238 for the first 30mins and 268 for the remaining 33 mins. My official split was 1:05:20, and that included T1.

The first time I have actually had a lead biker. Pretty cool to say the least. Only problem was this run course was no joke, I think the guy on the bike even struggled. It was 4 loops and was HILLY. I had a method for the one big hill though, I power walked it and on the last lap I was passing some of the pro women, they had a 10 or 15 minute head start on us during the swim. I tried to convince them to power walk with me as they were in a running motion but not moving at running speed. They just looked at me like I was a crazy foreigner, but hey my power walk put me on top of the podium, so no way they could knock it ;) Run time was pretty disappointing, but what can you expect 2 weeks after an IM and some crazy hill every lap. 43:44 was the time and it was 3rd fastest on the day with the fastest run split being a 40:27.

Swim-25:18 3rd Overall
Bike(T1 Included)-1:05:20 3rd Overall
Run(T2 Included)-43:44 3rd Overall
Total-2:14:21 1st Overall out of 262/1st Place AG

Overall I was really happy to get a big win in a race with over 100 people. I ended up winning 14Kg of rice, 10Kg for winning and 4Kg for talking about the race. Yeah I forgot about that I had to give my first speech, well they had the 4 foreigners that were there come on stage and talk about the race for a bag of rice. Lastly I would like to say THANK YOU to the Corbin family for giving me a ride to the race and cheering for me as well. Since I don't really cook I gave them my 14Kg of rice, I don't think they will be needing to buy rice for awhile. They also got 4Kg so in total we walked out with 18Kg of rice.

Here are some pictures from the race as well as the run course elevation chart.
Coming in from the second loop.

Out on the run suffering!
On stage with the big bag of rice
Click to see a more in depth view with HR and pace.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

IM Korea Race Report-KONA BOUND!

6 July 2011-

It really hasn't quite set in what happened on Sunday. I would like to say it was the toughest thing I have ever done but quite honestly it was just a long training day. The thing about IM is it is just a constant grind at the same "slow" pace. But first off, I just want to say THANK YOU to everyone that was following along on race day. Luckily my buddy John was there to update Facebook via twitter as I had a feeling that IM Live was going to be crap. So a BIG thanks to John for keeping everyone updated and for all the support during and after the race.

If you would like a more technical and "tri geek" race report check this one out on Slowtwitch:;sb=post_latest_reply;so=ASC;forum_view=forum_view_collapsed;;page=unread#unread

The day started out just like every other race day, except a lot earlier. I woke up at 0345 and ate the normal breakfast of 2 instant packs of Oatmeal, 1 Banana, and then a new addition of a thin sliced whole grain bagel. I went to bed having the race day business looming, but I was able to hold it off and actually woke up and took care of business first thing in the morning. Always a good sign when you have a long day ahead of you.

We left the hotel early and got to transition area right around 0510. Started off by dropping off the special need bags and body marking was right there as well. After that it was off to find a bathroom, well the line was ridiculous but we found a bathroom in the coffee shop. They weren't letting athletes use the bathroom though, so we sat down bought a coffee and then I slipped into the hallway where the bathroom was when they weren't looking. Taking care of business was accomplished twice before the race so I felt confident in being good for the whole race. After coffee I headed over to transition area and got everything setup. Then I had some time to just relax before race start. The race jitters were there but I wasn't feeling too bad.
Myself and David Temple, a good friend and training partner here at Osan!

Swim- I just hung out on the beach and didn't get a warmup in. I knew the swim was a long 2.4 miles so figured I would slowly get into my rythym. Well the swim start was pretty brutal, I got kicked, punched, tugged, but luckily after 500 meters of the washing machine effect it all cleared up. I found some feet to draft off of and then found some clean water to swim in. I felt comfortable on the whole swim other than bumping into the rope and buoys a few times, which is equivelant to getting punched. I came out of the first loop grabbed some water and headed back in. I didn't get a time split which I didn't mind as I figured I was on pace. Second loop was un eventful, couldn't find anyone to draft off of and just swam on my own. Overall I felt good about my swim, but even when coming out of the water I still hadn't got a split. So up the beach and in to T1 I went.
The "washing machine" of a swim start!

T1- I had no problem finding my bag on the rack and I was right into the changing tent. No wetsuit strippers were available which kind of sucked but I managed to get it of quite quickly. Got on the helmet and off I was out to the bike. Luckily John was outside of the transition area next to my bike and told me I swam around 57 minutes. First words out of my mouth were "That had to be short"(the course). Had a good exit out of the transition and off I went on the bike.
Headed out on the bike

Bike- I went out and had a plan to take the first hour easy. This was a big mental thing that I had to accept as quite a few people went fyling by me for the first hour. I waited about 30 minutes until I started taking in my calories in. Once I started eating all was good and my stomach was happy to have some food. I stayed on top of my nutrition and continued to monitor my power meter to make sure I was not pushing too hard. By the half way point I was slowly passing all of those people that went flying by me. The bike was pretty un eventful for the most part, I just concentrated on eating and hydrating. By the 150K point we had a line of about 15 guys that were riding legal for the most part, although it was hard as some guys would sit up and then the group would bunch up. Then a climb or two would come and the group would come together up the climb. But other than that I would say the bike course was pretty clean and they actually handed out a handful of penalties which was a suprise to me but I was happy to see it happen as Korea is known for it drafting with no penalties.

Cruising along the coast, beautiful bike course!

T2- John was there and told me I was holding my own and was in the top 6. I knew there was a guy who was a beast on the bike and I asked John where he was and he was 35 minutes up on me. Luckily I was prepared to know he was going to crush the bike and was just hoping I could have a good run and he would have a bad one. Unfortunatley he just crushed the whole course and had a great day, more to come on that later. Our "group" that came into T2 had some problems getting off their bikes and I was about 6 back and watched 3 guys pile up and fall of their bikes, pretty comical to say the least. I took my time getting off the bike, I was already off to one side to do a flying dismount but there wasn't enough bike catchers so I had to wait a few seconds to pass my bike off. Then I was into my run shoes and off I went.

Run- I knew with it being pretty hot and humid my run pace was going to have to adjust. After about the first mile I was aggrivated with my Garmin telling me to speed up, so I turned off the pace alert. I just kept my head in the game watched my nutrition and pushed on, just at a slower pace than planned. The first lap went pretty smooth and I didn't walk much, other than the waterstops. On the start of the second lap the first hill really took it out of me. The sun had just come out and it got HOT, I felt my body temp rising and was in a world of hurt. It was 2K till the next water stop and a majority of it was uphill. A guy that was in our group on the bike came by me and got me going with him. The good thing was it got me to the water stop quicker the bad thing was it was just out right painful. I got to the water stop drank some pepsi and just drenched myself in cold water. Then at that point the 2nd place female pro passed me, Maki who is on Team TBB and is from Japan. I had met her in Singapore and she remembered me from there. We ran together for about 4 or 5 miles, until the last turn around which was about 10K till the finish. I broke down again and started walking and she just kept on trucking on. I got to the turn around after walking about 1/2 mile and got drenched with cold water again drank some pepsi and took in some calories. Some other guys from our ride came along and got me back to running. We ran the last 9K together and up the last hill they continued on and I slowed back to a walk. I had mentally checked out as I did some math an my Garmin said 25 miles and the time of day was 1657, meaning I was not going to break 10. I glanced back around the same time and realized a guy in my AG was coming. I was not sure if he was on his first lap or second so I started running again, well it was more like a trot. I came down the last hill and there was John, Brett and Madden. Brett is my friend from Japan and Madden is his son, they handed me the US Flag and I rounded the last corner. I got to see the 2 guys that I had ran the last 9K with cross the line in what looked like sub 10. The one guy crossed it in 9:59:59, but the official time ended up being 10:00:02, I felt pretty bad for him as he was pushing it hard at the end. At least his finishing picture will show sub 10 ;) As for me I crossed the line at 10:00:31 officially and couldn't of been happier, my first IM was complete!
I look tiny next to that statue!

I had the American flag flying behind me until the last 10 meters and I haven't found a photo of it yet :( This one still turned out good! PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN!
Run Stats:

Splits: Placings with just Amatuers
Swim-58:35-39th Overall/7th AG
Bike-5:15:57-29th Overall/5th AG
Run- 3:40:54-41st Overall/8th AG
Total: 10:00:31* Kona Qualified :)
AG-4th/35(finishers)44(starters)- The top3 in my AG M25-29 were also in the Top 10 Overall including Pros, the Amateur winner was in my AG. I would say our AG was quite stacked, well those first 3 guys ;)!
19th Overall Amateur out of 806 Starters
27th Overall Including Pros
(The results did not have T1/T2 times in them and athlete tracker was not working)
Finish Picture:

And that is the Golden Ticket to Kona :)!!!!!

Wetsuit- 2008 Zoot Zenith
Kit- Kiwami Konami (AWESOME!)
Shoes- Zoot TT 4.0
Glasses- Oakley Jawbones
GPS: Forerunner 305

Pre Meal- 1 Banana, 2 packets of Quaker Instant Oatmeal (Apple Cinnamon), 1 Thin Sliced Whole Grain Bagel, 1 Cup of Coffee.
Swim- 1 cup of water after first loop
Bike- 2 Concentrated Bottles (1 at start/1 at special needs which was frozen night before) of 4 scoops Perpetum+5oz of EFS Liquid Shot+1 Hammer Gel, 1 packets of Honey Stinger Organic Chews, 2 packs of Clif Blocks, Approx 5 sport bottles of Gatorade, Approx 2 bottles of water. Total Calories: Approx-2800
Run- 2 Gel Flask of 3oz EFS Liquid Shot+2 Hammer Gel, ½ bottle of Coke at Special Needs, Aprrox 12 small cups of Pepsi, Approx 6 small cups of Gatorade, Approx 12 cups of water, and 20 Gallons of Ice cold water poured over head/body!

I can't THANK everyone enough for all the support that was sent my way during and after the race. Truly amazing to have such awesome family and friends in my life. I am looking forward to the journey to Kona as it is only 95 days away. I look forward to sharing some stories along the way with everyone and hoping to just inspire 1 person at a time to begin a healthy lifestyle. THANKS AGAIN!
If you remember my medical form in Germany I was "Bread" and now I am "Bard" hmmmm....Wonder what I will be in Kona B-Rad?

Some huge crabs in Emart!The view from the hotel room...
Recovering the day after the race with some great food and friends, and of course BEER!
World Cup Stadium on Jeju Island!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

IM Korea Pre Race

2 July 2011-

Well the big day is just a wake up away, that is if I fall asleep. I am pretty tired so I should fall asleep no problem. WOW it is really hard to believe that tomorrow is the big day, it seems like just yesterday I started this journey...........

It has been a long journey that has been filled with ups and downs, definitely more ups. I can't thank everyone enough that has supported me throughout it. I appreciate everyone that has followed the blog, FB, and now TWITTER. As I mentioned in my last blog my buddy John is down here, he rode with us in the TDK. He will be helping me out on course with some splits and will also be keeping everyone around the world up to date with how the race is going. Those of you that follow IM Live and the Athlete Tracker know it is hit or miss, so I figured since he had a smart phone we would throw some "tweets" out there and link it up via FB. So that is the cool thing that will be happening tomorrow is no matter how bad or good the IM coverage is you will still have some updates from John.

I have been racing for a purpose over the last couple races and it really makes these races mean a lot more. I feel like racing for someone/something else makes the race special, and being out there for a purpose gives me a reason to push hard. I have decided to race this IM in honor of a former teacher Carolyn Searway. She was diagnosed, in January-2011, with duodenal cancer. This has hit home and I often pray for her and her family. They are a family of 5, Mike who is the same age as me, Robby who is a year younger than Bryan (my brother), and Katie who is going into the 8th grade and then her husband Ben. They are very similar to my family in that we are all close in age. I cannot understand at times why God does the things that he does, but I continue to pray for strength for their family and for Carolyn. She is making progress and I was fortunate to visit with her while I was home on leave. I hope to go out there and race hard for her and her family. I ask that anyone that would pray for me on race day would channel your prayers to her and her family. IM is tough, but it cannot compare to the battle with cancer. Please take a minute to look at the website that has been setup and if you can please take a minute to pray for her and her family. and

The race starts at 7am(GMT+9) tomorrow morning, which will be 3pm California time. It will all begin with a 2.4 mile swim/112 mile bike/26.2 mile run. So I figure I will throw some guesstimates out there of how the day could play out. If it gets hot, windy, rainy, cold or any abnormal weather things can go off plan. It is a long day anything can happen but here are some goal/rough estimates.

Swim- 1:05-1:15
Bike- 4:55-5:25
Run- 3:10-3:30

I also have some other goals listed in order of importance:

3. Sub 12 Hours
4. Sub 10 Hours
5. KONA!!

Yes those goals are pretty aggressive when you get towards the bottom. I believe that I have put in the work and have made some sacrifices to accomplish those goals. It will take a good day and executing the race plan, but anything can happen as it is a long day.

I had a funny conversation with my Mom when I was home. It was before the tri at home and she asked me if I was going to WIN my AG at that race. I looked at her and told her that I was in the best shape of my life and I was going to lay it all out there, and if that was good enough to win than I would win. But there are things you cannot control, I cannot control who is going to show up and I cannot control the course or weather. Everyone will have to battle the conditions, but if 4 other guys show up and they are just out right faster than me well then the beat me to the line. So I will go out there and control what I can control and whatever happens happens. I know where I am, I know what I have put in and tomorrow is just another day of proving to myself where I am.

Here is the information for following the race for tomorrow: or should have an "athlete tracker" up. As of right now it is not up. My bid number is 38.

Like mentioned above John will be updating Twitter so checkout: and those tweets will also be going over to my FB account.

Thanks again for all of the support and look forward to making everyone proud tomorrow!

Friday, July 1, 2011

The Road to my First IM..........Part 3

2 July 2011-

As I sit here in the hotel the day before my first IM I figured I better finish up this series that I started. If this is the first post that you have stumbled across check out Part 1 and Part 2 first. It has been interesting to reflect back on things and I have really enjoyed thinking about everything and looking back through some old photos. So here we go on the final portion of this............

I departed Turkey the end of August and found myself back in South Korea. I was pretty happy with this move as I was familiar with Korea and knew that the racing scene was a lot better than Turkey. Luckily I had already been here before and knew my way around logistically and already had some in's into the local tri scene. I would say I hit the ground running as in the first 9 weeks there I raced 8 of those weekend. It was not the brightest idea on my part as I had the big marathon coming up, but I raced some of the races a little smarter than the others and in the end it all worked out. Could the marathon of went better? Who knows, but I sure enjoyed the journey that took me up to that race.

I went into the marathon wanting to break 3 hours. That was the big goal of last year was running a sub-3 marathon. I had some great indicators going into the race with a 1:18:55 half marathon and then averaging 2:48 for 10X800's, AKA the "Yasso 800's". Well I am not sure if it was all of the racing or the tough course, but I didn't quite hit the low 2:50's that I was aiming for but still managed the sub-3, so the big goal from 2010 was completed. Where do you go from there? It was a late season marathon so I took about 2 weeks off and then the real journey began.
During the Chuncheon Marathon!

Yes, believe it or not I have been training for my first IRONMAN since beginning of December. I made the plunge and went full board ahead into this big race. I started out by seeking out a coach, and ended up going with Team TBB Online Coaching, and went with Scott DeFilippis. Having a coach has been awesome, it is great to have someone to hold you accountable and watch your training. I have been around for a short 3 years, so I have a brief idea of "what to do", but going into my first IM I didn't want any excuses. We have really made some great progress with my swim and bike, and well my run has stayed the same but has become really good off the bike. It has been awesome to have structured plan that every workout has a purpose and everything builds into something bigger. I use to just go out and swim, bike and run without much focus, other than my run workouts. Now everything has been very structured and it has made things really focused and with a purpose. I also purchased an SRM (power meter for the bike), and that has also been a great training tool that has helped my cycling fitness and power.

So this year I have cut back on the racing and stayed focused on IM China, well now IM Korea. I had some great adventures along the way, traveling to Singapore, around Korea for a few races and then of course the Tour de Korea. The TDK was probably the highlight of the year thus far, but all of that could change tomorrow.

Suffering in the brutal humidity of Singapore.......Team Storck/Rapha during the TDK.........

These last 10 months have been an amazing journey and there have been some great friends that I have met along the way.

Zach/Aaron- Thanks for always coming out and riding even on some of the craziest days. You guys have been a key reason why my cycling fitness has taken off. Can't thank you enough for all you guys have done for me and helped me progress as an athlete.

Dave- Meeting you within the first 48 hours on base was awesome! Can't say I have ever met another triathlete so quick on a new base. Best of luck to you tomorrow!

Des- Once again we cross paths and you are always around to help out with the little logistical ins and odds throughout Korea. Thanks again for all of the help you have provided me along this journey.

Team Storck/Rapha- Pablo, Jeremy, and all the guys on the team, thanks for the opportunity to ride the TDK with you guys. I know it was probably a headache having a triathlete on the team, but man was the TDK a blast. Can't wait till next year, it is going to be a blast!

Traci- Life is not complete without a swimming partner, hahaha......Actually I think that is true because once you got deployed going to the pool really sucked. It was always good to continously get my butt kicked by you and have some great swim sets! Thanks for all your help, I would say you are one of the reasons I am slowly becoming a "swimmer".

John- The TDK was a blast and having someone like you to mentor me through the process was great. Thanks for coming down here to Jeju to help me out. Makes a huge difference to actually have someone here supporting.(John came down from Seoul to hang out and "vacation", he is going to hopefully be able to give me some splits along the course and be able to tell me to HTFU and push it when the going gets tough.)

Pyeongtaek Tri Club- Once again you guys have been a huge help. I don't know to many people that will load up a foreigner and give them a lift all the way back to base from down in far south korea. You guys are truly amazing and some great people. Best of luck to those of you that are racing this weekend, Mr. Yu go and get your VEGAS SLOT!

Work/Chain of Command- It is always great to have the support of the higher ups. They have given me the opportunity and supported me with my racing. Without their support I would not have been able to take part in the TDK or receive PTDY for this race. Thanks for supporting me in my athletic endeavors.

Family- As the journey along this crazy lifestyle that I live continues, tomorrow is a big day. I thank each and every one of you, without you I don't know if I would be where I am today. THANK!

Bryan, Steve, Maddy, Mom and Me a few weeks ago at the Silicon Valley Race.Brenda, me and Dad at the Silicon Valley Race